The Derek Fabulous collection by Derek Warburton for Face Stockholm celebrates acceptance, diversity, self-expression, and inclusion for PRIDE .
DEREK WARBURTON X FACE STOCKHOLM
FACE Stockholm announces its collaboration for PRIDE with Derek Warburton, world-renowned celebrity stylist, television personality, humanitarian, and editor in chief of Gurus and Mr. Warburton Magazines. The collection is named after Warburton’s moniker, “Derek Fabulous.”
The Derek Fabulous collection includes a curated palette of colorful eyeshadows, lip colors, and a tube of Warburton’s unique mix of rainbow glitter that represents embracing the boldness of self-expression and celebrates acceptance. Warburton elaborates on what this collection means to him.
“PRIDE is a celebration rooted in standing up against those who want to extinguish the freedom to express all gender identities and sexual orientations. This collection will be a tribute to those who have stood up for true self-expression and the allies that have stood beside them.”Derek Warburton
Derek Warburton has built his brand on his deep commitment to giving back to his community. Having been a homeless teen, his success has only strengthened his ongoing commitment and fundraising efforts aimed at helping at-risk LGBTQ+ youth. Warburton and FACE Stockholm will be donating 100% of the profits to GLSEN, an organization founded by teachers who recognize the role that educators play in creating affirming learning environments for LGBTQ+ youth. GLSEN focuses on activating supportive educators and centering and uplifting student-led movements, which have powered initiatives like the Day of Silence, Solidarity Week, and more.
FACE Stockholm is celebrating 40 years this year as a female-owned makeup and skincare company founded in Stockholm, Sweden. Their values have led them as people and as a brand from its inception. FACE Stockholm built itself on self-expression and individuality, clean ingredients, and sustainability. Those tenants have enabled the company to continue as a self-directed independent brand for forty years. This collaboration recognizes the progress in inclusivity, diversity, and the acceptance of people living and loving freely and expressing their most authentic selves while also acknowledging that there is still more work to do.
We had an exclusive interview with Derek Warburton about his new collaboration with Face Stockholm, Derek Fabulous:
You have a strong cultural background and voice in fashion, after working with so many charities, LGBTQ organizations + celebrities. That’s why, we think your new collaboration with Face Stockholm, DEREK FABULOUS, is a powerful message for the beauty industry worldwide. What does it mean for you to have this collaboration and what is the message behind it you want people to understand?
Derek Warburton: This collaboration for me means so much because it is so personal. The term “DEREK FABULOUS”, was created by me so many years ago almost as an alter ego. I had achieved a lot in my career, I had found superficial success but I was still suffering a great deal on the inside from past traumas of my childhood that I had not completely healed from. I needed to do something.
I had a very dear friend named Molly Heintz who was working with a wonderful organization called Bottomless Closet in New York where I was living at the time. Bottomless Closet is an organization that works with women in need to help them enter the workforce. Many of the women are homeless or just transitioning back into working, in the interview process or just needing a little help. My friend had taken me to lunch to tell me about it but also to consult with me about my life and where I was taking my career, knowing I was in distress but also in need of an outlet I could channel all I had to give. That was the birth of DEREK FABULOUS, which meant, help, teach, inspire, love and have fun. Little did I know this character and program name would not only be the catalyst of good but it also became a career moniker and a key to healing my heart through my work with the organization. All those years ago DEREK FABULOUS led me down a path of healing and good and now I hope my new collaboration with Face Stockholm and our Pride makeup collection does the same with our partnership with GLSEN, an organization started by educators that protects LGBTQ+ children in schools across America. Every dollar sold in my new collection is donated back to GLSEN so the children of this generation will not have to suffer the same way I did.
It’s interesting that you chose Face Stockholm from so many beauty brands? Why this choice and how do you think this beauty brand is making a difference in the fashion industry?
Derek Warburton: The truth is I did not choose Face Stockholm, they chose me! The owner of Face Stockholm, Martina Arfwidson, heard a speech I made when I won the Style Icon Award at the NEWYOU Beauty Awards. I had never spoken about being a homeless teen, abused, bullied and suicidal which I had never admitted publicly before. Even though I was in a room of 300 that included celebrities, CEO’s and fashion legends I felt safe for the first time to express myself publicly. Then the unbelievable happened. I was approached by a woman named Ilise Harris who was a guest. She was moved and asked if she could write to me. When she did I wasn’t clear on her intentions until we finally had a call. She expressed she had shared a video she had recorded of the speech with the owner of Face Stockholm and they wanted to make me an offer. I was overwhelmed and speechless, within a week we were in meetings to blend our brands!
When was that first “Oh shit” moment when you realized that the fashion industry was going to be your life purpose?
Derek Warburton: Very, very, very early on. My grandmother would take me shopping every Saturday morning of my young childhood. Each weekend we would have a new destination; whether it would be the mall, the outlets or even some sort of antique center. She was a collector. That philosophy became even more important to me after my parents divorced and I moved away with my mother. It was with my mother that my childhood traumas began and I would hold onto those memories. Those memories became dreams and those dreams ended up becoming my reality again much later on.
We think your style is very powerful. Is there any icon who always inspired you as a child?
Derek Warburton: I grew up in the late 80s but most of that era was blocked for me due to being homeless and living in a bubble. My “growing up” icons really came through fashion magazines. I studied and read every fashion magazine cover to cover. I was obsessed with Gianni Versace, Rifat Ozbek, Christian Lacroix, Thierry Mugler. The early 90’s and the supermodel era is when I came alive! The supermodels, Club kids, Paris is Burning. I was intrigued and fascinated.
What is the most challenging part about being part of the fashion industry?
Derek Warburton: The most challenging part of being in the fashion industry is finance. It was a constant struggle. I now have a multi faceted business that has divisions and some make money and other parts are for my art. I always say I would be rich if I would just concentrate on the financial part but I’ve built my wealth on and power on my artistic ability to blend my life. My soul is fulfilled by my work, the rest will catch up.
Do you ever find yourself unable to express your creativity to the fullest? What kinds of things inhibit you?
Derek Warburton: I own my own company and haven’t had a real “job” in over 20 years. I drive my own creativity, I create my own business and I devise my own destiny. Sometimes I accept clients for financial gain but then I find interesting ways to work with them to make it a challenge and exercise my abilities. I have been really fortunate with great client retention which tells me it all seems to be working. On top of all of that, my life is filled with enough creative and philanthropic endeavors to keep me fulfilled for a lifetime. I regularly say it’s not my business that causes me distress, it’s my other endeavors because I want them to be a success also.
Is there a particular place where you feel most creative?
Derek Warburton: I feel most creative when I am walking, hiking, or doing some sort of physical activity. I think it is so important to release stress so your creative flow can be free and I will always be a New Yorker in my mind which keeps me Car-less even in Los Angeles. The time spent driving is valuable for other things!
What would you change in the fashion or beauty industry in order to improve the LGBTQ community?
Derek Warburton: I’m not trying to change anyone, I only want to enhance and offer an alternative. The DEREK FABULOUS for FACE Stockholm PRIDE makeup collection is colorful and fun with zero judgments for those who live with zero judgements. I want people in our tribe who want to feel free and live in the light. That’s not changing anyone, that’s an offer of joy and acceptance.
Do you have any hobbies or interests outside fashion?
Derek Warburton: I love to learn, I’m a sponge and I find culture fascinating that is why I seem to create new digital platforms yearly. Plus I am a very athletic person. I’m so high energy and I enjoy walking, hiking and in the last year I have found boxing which I love. Boxing is something I never thought I would enjoy but has turned into a great joy that I am happy to wake up at 4:30am for. It exhilarates me and gets out any aggression I may have about the injustices of the world. Finally there is interior design. I am an avid collector of home furnishings, I live alone with my little maltipoo puppy and have outgrown two homes.
A letter to your FUTURE self. What would you write?
Derek Warburton: A letter to my future self. Please, with all my heart , do not forget where you have come from. Appreciate and love yourself as I do today and most importantly never give up on finding the goodness in the world!